Here’s an idea for a generation completely screwed by the current housing market, break into a zoo and get along with the current residents. Disclaimer: This is not a serious housing policy.
At least that’s the length a wild racoon in Germany went to after breaking into a zoo and getting along with its current residents.
German newspaper Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung reported on Friday (May 3), Fred the racoon just appeared at the zoo one day.
— Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung (@RNZonline) May 3, 2019
Like someone with passable social skills and an ability to empty the bins on the regular fit into a shared living space he just fitted right in.
Fred has now integrated with the racoon group who have been living in a new large enclosure at the Heidelberg Zoo since it opened in March 2014.
Sandra Reichler, curator for mammals in the Tiergarten, told Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung:
Fred came to us and got used to the good life in the zoo.
At first it wasn’t an easy fit for Fred. In the wild he was nocturnal and had to get used to the zookeepers. ‘But now he has become accustomed to the zookeepers and also adapted his daily rhythm to his conspecifics in the zoo,’ Reichler said.
Fred can thank those ‘faceless Brussels bureaucrats’ because an EU directive means he can’t just be thrown back out into the wild. Well not him specifically, that would be madness, but a 2015 regulation that regulates the prevention and management of the introduction and spread of invasive alien species in the European Union.
Gray squirrels and crabs are also on the list just in case any end up reading this and find their way to your property.
The bad news for Fred now that he’s got his lodgings sorted is as a result of the directive animals are no longer allowed to be transported, ceased, bred or released. In short, he’s going to have to be castrated.
As someone who’s spent almost £60,000 in rent since leaving university, Fred you have my deepest sympathies. Feel your pain entirely.
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Tim Horner is a sub-editor at UNILAD. He graduated with a BA Journalism from University College Falmouth before most his colleagues were born. A previous editor of adult mags, he now enjoys bringing the tone down in the viral news sector.